List of AR platform cartridges
The AR platform has become widely popular for various applications, including simple fun, target shooting, hunting, and much more. The names "AR-10" and "AR-15" are actually trademarks of ArmaLite and Colt respectively, but the terms have become essentially ubiquitous in describing any rifle that is based on those platforms. The AR-15 rifle usually comes chambered for either the .223 Remington, or the military's higher-pressure 5.56x45mm NATO, which can safely fire the .223 Remington, while the reverse is highly advised against for safety reasons, due to the possibility of damaging the rifle, or even possible catastrophic failure that will result in injury for the shooter. The AR-15 and AR-10 can also be converted to many other calibers as well, and here we will attempt to create and maintain a definitive list of them all, if possible.
- 1 AR-15 Cartridges
- 2 AR-10 Cartridges
- 3 Other AR pattern rifles
- 4 AR Style Shotguns
- 5 Parent Cases for Non-Standard AR Calibers
- 6 Other Information
- .17 HMR
- .17 Mach 2
- .17 Winchester Super Magnum
- .22 Long Rifle - Various dedicated upper receivers, as well as easy to use conversion kits from companies such as CMMG.
- .22 Winchester Magnum Rimfire
Centerfire Cartridges (Imperial)
- .17 Mach IV
- .17 Remington Fireball
- .17 Remington
- .20 Practical
- .20 GPC (wildcat)
- .22 GPC (wildcat)
- .22 Grendel (wildcat) aka .224 Grendel
- .22 Nosler
- .22 PPC
- .204 Ruger
- .222 Remington
- .223 Remington - Original AR-15 cartridge: .223 cartridges may function in a 5.56×45mm rifle, however 5.56×45mm cartridges may produce excessive pressure in a .223 Rem rifle. On the other hand, a .223 Wylde chamber is used on .223 Remington rifle barrels to allow both to safely fire.
- .223 Remington or 5.56×45mm NATO ammunition.
- .223 Winchester Super Short Magnum
- .224 Kritzeck (wildcat of a .223 Remington with shortened neck)
- .224 Valkyrie
- .24 GPC
- .243 LBC
- .243 Winchester Super Short Magnum
- .25 Winchester Super Short Magnum
- .25-45 Sharps
- .257 Ocelot (wildcat)
- .25 GPC (wildcat)
- .26 GPC (wildcat)
- .27 GPC (wildcat)
- .277 Wolverine (semi-wildcat) - intermediate cartridge that bridges the gap between 5.56 NATO and .300 Blackout.
- .277 MSR (Dasher Wildcat)
- .28 GPC (wildcat)
- .30 American
- .30 Carbine
- .30 GPC (wildcat)
- .30 Remington AR
- .30 Sabertooth (wildcat)
- .300 OSSM
- .300 AAC Blackout (7.62×35mm)
- .300 Whisper
- .300 HAM'R - Wilson Combat
- .338 SOCOM (wildcat)
- .338 Spectre (wildcat)
- .350 Legend
- .357 Automag (wildcat)
- .358 SOCOM (wildcat)
- .358 Yeti (wildcat)
- .375 Stalker (wildcat)
- .375 SOCOM
- .400 AR (wildcat)
- .40 S&W
- .44 Automag (wildcat)
- .44 Remington Magnum (wildcat)
- .44 SOCOM (wildcat)
- .440 Corbon Magnum (wildcat)
- .45 ACP
- .450 Bushmaster
- .458 HAM'R
- .458 SOCOM
- .475 SOCOM (wildcat)
- .499 LWRC
- .50 Action Express
- .50 Beowulf
- .50 SOCOM (wildcat)
Centerfire Cartridges (Metric)
- 5.45×39mm - Intermediate cartridge originating in the Soviet Union. Based on the 7.62x39, necked down to accept 5.45mm projectiles.
- 5.56×45mm NATO - Original M16A1 cartridge: Can also safely fire .223 Remington, intermediate
- 5.7×28mm - PDW cartridge by FN, used traditionally in the FN P90 PDW, and the FN Five-seveN pistol, and more recently the Ruger-57 pistol.
- 6mm Mongoose (wildcat)
- 6mm ARC - rifle
- 6mm Dasher
- 6mm AR (wildcat)
- 6×45mm - intermediate
- 6.5mm Grendel - intermediate
- 6.5 Timberwolf (wildcat)
- 6.8×39mm (aka .277 Wolverine) - intermediate cartridge that bridges the gap between 5.56 NATO and .300 Blackout.
- 6.8mm Remington SPC - intermediate
- 7mm Valkyrie (wildcat)
- 7.62×33mm (.30 Carbine) - Carbine cartridge originally used in the M1 Carbine.
- 7.62×37mm Musang - PDW cartridge developed in the Philippines by the Filipino government. Unclear if ever used..?
- 7.62×39mm - intermediate
- 7.62×40mm Wilson Tactical - rifle round.
- 7.92x33mm Kurz - intermediate
- 9×19mm Parabellum - pistol cartridge.
- 9×39mm - Russian subsonic rifle round.
- 10mm Auto (10×25mm) - pistol
- 10mm SOCOM (wildcat)
Cartridges that won't feed but which are used in rifles where the receiver functions as a trigger group
(This information needs validation)
- .338 Lapua Magnum - Magnum rifle cartridge, well known for extreme long-range performance.
- .408 CheyTac (10.36×77mm) - rifle cartridge.
- .50 BMG (12.7×99mm NATO) - anti-material rifle.
- .220 Swift
- .22-250 Remington
- .243 Winchester - same bolt as 7.62×51 (worn-down barrels can be re-bored to take .260 Remington, 7mm-08, or 7.62×51/.308). Can be formed from .260 Remington, 7mm-08, or .308 Winchester brass.
- 6mm Remington
- 6mm Creedmoor - Uses the same bolt as 7.62x51.
- .257 Roberts
- 6.5×47mm Lapua
- 6.5mm Creedmoor - same bolt as 7.62×51, and can be formed from 7.62×51 brass. Becoming highly popular and is renowned for it's impressive long range performance, combined with low recoil.
- .260 Remington - same bolt as 7.62×51. Can be formed from 7.62×51 brass.
- 6.5 Winchester Short Magnum (aka 6.5 WSM)
- .270 Winchester Short Magnum
- 7mm-08 Remington - same bolt as 7.62×51, and can be formed from 7.62×51 brass.
- 7.62×51mm NATO - Original AR-10 cartridge.
- 7mm Winchester Short Magnum
- 7mm Remington Short Action Ultra Magnum
- .308 Winchester - considered interchangeable with 7.62×51mm NATO according to SAAMI.
- .300 Winchester Short Magnum
- .300 Remington Short Action Ultra Magnum
- .325 Winchester Short Magnum
- .338 Winchester Short Magnum
- .338 Federal - same bolt as 7.62×51. Can be formed from 7.62×51 brass.
- .358 Winchester - same bolt as 7.62×51. Can be formed from 7.62×51 brass.
- .358 Winchester Short Magnum
- .375 Raptor - same bolt as 7.62×51, and can be formed using 7.62×51 brass.
- .375 Winchester Short Magnum
- .416 Winchester Short Magnum
- .450 Marlin
- .45 Raptor
- 45-70 Auto
- .458 Winchester Short Magnum
- .475 Bishop Short Magnum
- .50 Krater
- .500 Auto Max
- .500 Phantom
- .500 Whisper
- .510 Whisper
- .510 Winchester Short Magnum
Other AR pattern rifles
Some companies have created AR pattern rifles that depart from the standard AR-15 and AR-10 dimensions in order to accommodate other types of ammunition that would not fit into the those standards.
Examples include (sorted by overall cartridge length):
|7.5×55mm Swiss||3.059 in (77.70 mm)|
|6.5×55mm Swedish||3.150 in (80.00 mm)|
|.25-06 Remington||3.252 in (82.60 mm)|
|7mm Remington Magnum||3.307 in (84.00 mm)|
|.270 Winchester||3.339 in (84.80 mm)|
|.300 Winchester Magnum||3.346 in (85.00 mm)|
|.30-06 Springfield||3.346 in (85.00 mm)|
|.26 Nosler||3.346 in (85.00 mm)|
|.28 Nosler||3.346 in (85.00 mm)|
|.30 nosler||3.346 in (85.00 mm)|
|.33 Nosler||3.346 in (85.00 mm)|
|.338 Lapua Magnum||3.681 in (93.50 mm)|
AR Style Shotguns
A variety of manufacturers have introduced semi-automatic shotguns whose overall designs are either heavily influenced by the AR pattern rifle, or are directly based on them.
Parent Cases for Non-Standard AR Calibers
Some of the calibers listed above use a proprietary case that is specific to that given cartridge. Other cartridges were derived from re-forming an existing case and possibly trimming the length in order to arrive at a case-shape that meets the standardized SAAMI-spec dimensions.
AR-15 Parent Cases
- .22 Nosler - (a proprietary round), uses the head and rim dimensions of the 5.56x45, along with a case-body that is similar to that of the 6.8 Remington SPC. In order to increase powder capacity, the shoulder is higher than the 6.8, and the case is also longer. The neck is sized for .224 caliber bullets.
- .224 Valkyrie - Uses 6.8 SPC cases, trimmed shorter, and shoulder re-formed lower due to being designed for using relatively long high ballistic coefficient bullets. Neck is sized for .224 caliber bullets.
- .25-45 Sharps - Uses standard military 5.56x45 case (also .223 cases). The neck is simply expanded to .257 caliber.
- 6.5mm Grendel - The Grendel uses the same head and rim from the .220 Russian and the 7.62x39 with a rim diameter of 0.441-0.449. The 6.5 Grendel bullets have a true diameter of 6.71mm / 0.264" and the case can be formed from abundant 7.62x39 cases with a neck re-sizing die, as well as fire-forming a slight change to the shoulder if using a brass casing. Many popular 7.62x39 cases are made from steel, which will not work properly for reforming the case's shoulder.
- .277 Wolverine - Standard military 5.56x45 case (also .223), shoulder is reformed lower, length is trimmed, neck is sized to accept .277 projectiles.
- 6.8 Remington SPC- A proprietary cartridge. Developed as an all new cartridge in the hopes of gaining a military contract. Rim diameter is 0.421 inches.
- .300 AAC Blackout - Uses military 5.56x45 (also .223). The shoulder is reformed, length trimmed, neck sized to .308 caliber. This cartridge has become very popular, and examples are available in a wide variety of styles. Bullet weights can currently be found between 100gr to 220gr, the latter of which is primarily used with a suppressor, resulting in a very quiet report while still being hard-hitting.
- 7.62x40 Wilson Tactical - Uses 5.56 NATO cases (also .223). Shoulder is re-formed, length is trimmed, and neck is sized to .308 caliber. This cartridge is very similar to the 300 AAC Blackout, but the shoulder is slightly higher and the case is slightly taller, which allows for more gunpowder capacity when loading the lighter/shorter high-velocity bullets.
- .338 Spectre - Uses 10mm Magnum pistol cases with a 6.8 SPC bolt-face. A shoulder is formed, and the case is lightly trimmed to length, and the neck is sized to .338, down from 0.401". The 10mm rim is 0.424" (10.8mm) in diameter, and the SPC rim diameter is 0.422" (10.7mm). The .338 caliber bullets are available in weights between 200gr-250gr.
- .350 Legend - Proprietary cartridge. The head and rim dimensions exactly match the military 5.56x45 case, allowing the use of the standard bolt-face of an AR-15. However, the case has an added taper and is longer than 5.56x45 cases, so these cannot be reformed from any existing case. The nominal bullet diameter is .357-inch, but SAAMI specs allow the bullet diameter variance to be .355-.357
- .357 Auto - Wildcat cartridge. Uses 10mm magnum pistol cases with a 6.8 SPC bolt-face. The existing 357-Sig pistol is a 9mm bullet shouldered into the larger 40 S&W pistol case. The 10mm cartridge and the 40 S&W are almost identical, but the 10mm case is longer and operates at a higher pressure. This means that you can use existing 357-Sig dies to re-form the straight-wall 10mm case into a shouldered .355" (9mm), and then the neck can be sized up to accept .358 rifle bullets. This is in response to the popularity of the 300 Blackout at subsonic velocities. If the bullet velocity is capped at 1,000-Feet Per Second / FPS in order to subdue the noise of firing, then the impact can be improved by increasing the weight of the bullet. The 357 Auto can be loaded with bullets in .358-caliber, while still fitting within the AR-15 COAL of 2.260". Bullet weights are currently available between 225gr-310gr
- .358 Yeti - Uses standard military 7.62x51 cases (also .308), length is trimmed, shoulder is reformed, neck is sized to .358". Bullet weights are currently available between 225gr-310gr
- .375 Stalker - Standard military 7.62x51 cases (also .308), length is trimmed, shoulder is reformed, neck is expanded to .375
- .375 SOCOM Proprietary. The case head and rim dimensions exactly match the military 7.62x51 (also .308), however, the case body is slightly wider and has more taper.
- .400 AR - Wildcat cartridge. The parent is the 7.35x51mm Carcano rifle case. It has a rim diameter of 0.447" which allows the use of an AR-15 bolt-face from the existing 6.5-Grendel or 7.62x39. The shoulder is trimmed off at a case-length of 1.700", with a COAL of 2.250", resulting in a "straight-wall" cartridge. It can accept .401-.402 rifle bullets (240gr-310gr) from muzzle-loaders, and also .400-.401 bullets from a 10mm magnum pistol (135gr-230gr).
- .450 Bushmaster - Uses .284 Winchester cases. Cut the length to 1.700" to form a straight-wall cartridge, from 2.170". The .284 Winchester case is very similar to the .308, however, the .284 case has a body diameter of 0.500", and the .308 case has a body diameter of 0.471". Both share an identical head/rim. The 450B is limited to 35,000-psi, which is more common in pistols, and lower than similarly-sized rifle cartridges. The 450B uses .452" diameter bullets, most often seen in the abundant 45-caliber pistol styles. The 300gr version is rated at 1900fps at the muzzle, and the 250gr at 2200fps.
- .458 SOCOM - A proprietary cartridge. The case head and rim dimensions exactly match the military 7.62x51 (also .308), but the case body is slightly wider and has more taper.
- .50 Beowulf - Proprietary round. The case head and rim dimensions exactly match the .44-Magnum pistol case, and all dimensions from the lower part of the case matches the 50-Action Express (50 AE), which can be described as a .44-Magnum cartridge that has had the body of the case expanded to 50-caliber while leaving the head intact. However, the 50 Beowulf case is longer than the 50AE, so the 50AE cases cannot be used as a donor.
Note on donor cases: The 7.62x51 military cartridge is known in the civilian world as the .308 cartridge. Since its dimensions are taken from the 30-06 cartridge from the 1906 US Army cartridge, the lower half of these case dimensions have been used for designing the .243 Winchester, 25-06, .270 Winchester, .280 Remington, 7mm-08, .308, .30-06, .35 Whelen, and others. Any AR-15/AR-10 cartridge cases that are derived from the 7.62x51 can also possibly be formed from the aforementioned cartridges.
AR-10 Parent Cases
The AR-10 is larger and heavier than the AR-15. It was originally designed to chamber the military 7.62x51 NATO cartridge (also .308), which has a COAL of 2.800" (71.12mm)
- .45 Raptor, uses the standard 7.62 NATO case, cut to a length of 1.800" from 2.015", resulting in a straight-wall cartridge, neck is sized to 0.452". The resulting COAL of 2.300" is only 1.02mm longer than the maximum COAL for chambering a cartridge in the smaller AR-15, however, the 45 Raptor chamber pressure is allowed to be as high as 62,000-PSI. This means that the stronger AR-10 receiver and bolt carrier group is needed for shooting this cartridge.